Topaz begins planned expansion in West Africa
Two anchor handling and supply vessels sent offshore Nigeria
Oilfield services group, Topaz Energy and Marine has secured a two vessel contract offshore Nigeria for the duration of 2011. The award constitutes a new market entry for Topaz in the strategically important and buoyant West African offshore sector.
Topaz has mobilised two Anchor Handling Tug Supply Vessels (AHTSV), Topaz Johor and Topaz Jurong, for an eight month contract to support operations in the Atlas, Mira and Brittania fields, offshore Nigeria, on behalf of AXXIS Petroconsultants Ltd.
The award of the contract follows the development of a Topaz management team for West Africa, led by Roy Donaldson, chief operating officer at Topaz Marine, who has over 10 years of operational experience in Nigeria.
Topaz chief executive officer, Fazel Fazelbhoy commented: “This award fits well with our international expansion plan and is significant since it lays the first cornerstone of Topaz’s strategic presence in the region. These markets are large, high growth and will reward those that are well prepared with the right strategy. The youth and operational flexibility of our fleet gives us a compelling advantage due to increasingly stringent safety regulations and vessel age restrictions.”
“We have taken our first step in the West African offshore sector and we believe this market has immense potential for growth. We look forward to exploring further market opportunities during the course of the year.”
Topaz’s entry into West Africa is part of the group’s long-term strategy to follow ‘future oil' and expand into deep-water offshore growth markets. Earlier in 2011, Topaz Marine completed the US$ 40 million acquisition of 2 anchor handling vessels in Brazil, operating on 3-year contracts for Petrobras, marking its entry into the Brazilian offshore sector. Both of these contract wins will serve as spring boards for Topaz to grow its operations further.